Monday, November 10, 2008

why is your hand in my pocket, maam?

I’ve always been a huge fan of garage sales. There is something completely irresistible about having the chance to look through the junk of complete strangers, and for a small price, even take some of it home with me. I remember my brother once when he was probably eight years old, went to a neighbor’s garage sale and returned, showing my mom and me a skateboard he got. He told us, “It was only $2 and it’s in mint condition - it just needs another wheel.” He was so excited that it was hard to be critical of his three wheeled “great deal.”

And garage sale-ing is even more fun if you have a purpose – a mission – like looking for little boys’ clothes or scavenging for books for a first grade classroom. Well, this weekend, I got up early and had the newspaper ready with all the town’s sales highlighted and I’ve got a mission – I’m looking for toys. Armed with single dollar bills and a handful of quarters, I set out.

I went to several sales and found nothing really great. But then there was one that had some toys. I was checking out the available goods when suddenly I felt someone standing close to me – a little too close. Now, I am a big fan of personal space. I’m not freaky, like I won’t fall on the floor and curl up in a ball if you get too close, but I really prefer if people I don’t know stay far enough away that I cannot smell their breath. And with this lady, all bets were off for personal space. This lady was all over me, looking over my shoulder (and under my arm and around my thigh) at every item I was interested in. I felt like I had a Siamese twin. Make that a Siamese twin who was missing most of her front teeth.

I quickly paid for my toys and got the heck out of there. Because no cheap toy is worth being felt up by someone who could be an extra on Hee Haw.

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